AS/A Level GCE                             GCE Media Studies             OCR Advanced Subsidiary GCE in Media Studies H140...
Contents1   About these Qualifications                                                                        4    1.1   T...
6     Other Specification Issues                                                                       50      6.1    Over...
1       About these QualificationsThis booklet contains OCR’s Advanced Subsidiary GCE and Advanced GCE specifications inMe...
study a specific media industry from a choice of: film, music, newspapers, radio, magazines orvideo games. This unit is ex...
1.4     AimsThe aims of these specifications are to:•   enhance candidates enjoyment and appreciation of the media and its...
2           Summary of Content2.1         AS UnitsG321: Foundation Portfolio in MediaThe following briefs are offered:•   ...
G323: Key Media Concepts (Radio Drama)Textual Analysis and Representation:•   Speech•   Music•   Sound effects•   EditingI...
2.2         A2 UnitsG324: Advanced Portfolio in MediaThe following briefs are offered and in this portfolio a combination ...
3       Unit Content3.1     AS G321: Foundation Portfolio in MediaThe purpose of this unit is firstly to assess candidates...
BriefsWhen centres choose briefs to offer to candidates, they should be guided by their strengths interms of resources and...
WebsitePreliminary exercise: a new homepage for a school/college. This should include a photo of theinstitution, buttons t...
The presentation of the research, planning and evaluation may take the form of any one, orcombination of two or more, of t...
Acceptable formats for production texts and research presentationsVideo work must be in DVD format but must be playable on...
artefact, according to his/her contribution. Teachers are asked to support marks with writtencomments under the three cate...
3.2       AS G322: Key Media Concepts (TV Drama)The purpose of these units is first to assess candidates’ media textual an...
For examination in 2009, 2010 and 2011:The unseen moving image extract will be four to five minutes long and will be from ...
Set Topic ContentThe content below represents what candidates should learn and is also provided as the source ofthe questi...
It is acknowledged that not every one of the above technical areas will feature in equal measure inany given extract. Ther...
This unit should be approached through contemporary examples in the form of case studies basedupon one of the specified me...
Additional guidance about the suitability of proposed case studies for Section B guidance will beprovided in the Teachers’...
3.3       AS G323: Key Media Concepts (Radio Drama)The purpose of this unit is first to assess candidates media textual an...
For the examination in 2009, 2010, 2011:The unheard audio extract will be four to five minutes in length and will be from ...
Set Topic ContentThe content below represents what candidates should learn and is also provided as the source ofthe questi...
Section B: Institutions and AudiencesCandidates should be prepared to understand and discuss the processes of production,d...
RadioA study if the particular station or media group within the contemporary radio industry that targets aBritish audienc...
Additional informationDetailed instructions for checking and listening to the audio extract will be sent to centres with t...
3.4          A2 G324: Advanced Portfolio in MediaThe purpose of this unit is firstly to assess candidates’ ability to plan...
The production element and presentation of research, planning and evaluation may be individual orgroup work (maximum group...
Menu of set briefsWhen centres choose from these set briefs for candidates, they should be guided by theirstrengths in ter...
Briefs1.     A promotion package for the release of an album, to include a music promo video, together       with two of t...
6.      A selection of materials related to an original children’s TV drama, to include the title        sequence to the T...
11.   The first level of a new computer/video game, together with two of the following three options:•   the cover for the...
Presentation of work for moderationWhere candidates produce disc-based artefacts as part of a group activity, it must be c...
3.5      A2 G325: Critical Perspectives in MediaThe purpose of this unit is to assess candidates’ knowledge and understand...
•    Genre•    Narrative•    Representation•    Audience•    Media languageIn the examination, questions will be set using...
•   Post-modern Media•   ‘We Media’ and DemocracyTopic Content PromptsCandidates are free to study any media texts, theori...
•    How does contemporary representation compare to previous time periods?•    What are the social implications of differ...
‘We Media’ and Democracy•   What are ‘We Media’?•   Where / how has ‘We Media’ emerged?•   In what way are the contemporar...
For example, a candidate studying computer / video games for Post-modern Media will need toconsider the status of games as...
4        Schemes of Assessment4.1      AS GCE Scheme of Assessment                                         AS GCE Media St...
4.3     Unit OrderThe normal order in which the unit assessments could be taken is AS Units G321 and G322 orG323 in the fi...
4.7      Assessment ObjectivesCandidates are expected to demonstrate the following in the context of the content described...
AO weightings in Advanced GCE         Unit                                               % of Advanced GCE                ...
5        Technical Information5.1      Making Unit EntriesPlease note that centres must be registered with OCR in order to...
purposes. The two-unit AS GCE has a total of 200 uniform marks and the four-unit Advanced GCEhas a total of 400 uniform ma...
5.6      Unit and Qualification Re-sitsThere is no restriction on the number of times a candidate may re-sit each unit bef...
Centres should be aware that candidates who enter for more than one GCE qualification with thesame classification code wil...
Minimum Coursework RequiredIf a candidate submits no work for a unit, then the candidate should be indicated as being abse...
6       Other Specification Issues6.1     Overlap with other QualificationsThere is a small degree of overlap between the ...
6.4      Spiritual, Moral, Ethical, Social, Legislative, Economic and         Cultural IssuesThese specifications offer op...
6.7     LanguageThese specifications and associated assessment materials are in English only.6.8     Disability Discrimina...
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
As a level_gce_media_studies_specification
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As a level_gce_media_studies_specification

  1. 1. AS/A Level GCE GCE Media Studies OCR Advanced Subsidiary GCE in Media Studies H140 OCR Advanced GCE in Media Studies H540 version 2 – February 2008© OCR 2008 QAN 500/2599/5 QAN 500/2589/2
  2. 2. Contents1 About these Qualifications 4 1.1 The Two-Unit AS 4 1.2 The Four-Unit Advanced GCE 5 1.3 Qualification Titles and Levels 5 1.4 Aims 6 1.5 Prior Learning/Attainment 62 Summary of Content 7 2.1 AS Units 7 2.2 A2 Units 93 Unit Content 10 3.1 AS G321: Foundation Portfolio in Media 10 3.2 AS G322: Key Media Concepts (TV Drama) 16 3.3 AS G323: Key Media Concepts (Radio Drama) 22 3.4 A2 G324: Advanced Portfolio in Media 28 3.5 A2 G325: Critical Perspectives in Media 354 Schemes of Assessment 41 4.1 AS GCE Scheme of Assessment 41 4.2 Advanced GCE Scheme of Assessment 41 4.3 Unit Order 42 4.4 Unit Options (at AS/A2) 42 4.5 Synoptic Assessment (A Level GCE) 42 4.6 Assessment Availability 42 4.7 Assessment Objectives 43 4.8 Quality of Written Communication 445 Technical Information 45 5.1 Making Unit Entries 45 5.2 Making Qualification Entries 45 5.3 Grading 45 5.4 Result Enquiries and Appeals 46 5.5 Shelf-life of Units 46 5.6 Unit and Qualification Re-sits 47 5.7 Guided Learning Hours 47 5.8 Code of Practice/Subject Criteria/Common Criteria Requirements 47 5.9 Arrangements for Candidates with Particular Requirements 47 5.10 Prohibited Qualifications and Classification Code 47 5.11 Coursework Administration/Regulations 482 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  3. 3. 6 Other Specification Issues 50 6.1 Overlap with other Qualifications 50 6.2 Progression from these Qualifications 50 6.3 Key Skills Mapping 50 6.4 Spiritual, Moral, Ethical, Social, Legislative, Economic and Cultural Issues 51 6.5 Sustainable Development, Health and Safety Considerations and European Developments 51 6.6 Avoidance of Bias 51 6.7 Language 52 6.8 Disability Discrimination Act Information Relating to these Specifications 52Appendix A: Performance Descriptions 53Appendix B: Sample Marking Criteria for Unit G321: Foundation Portfolio in Media 56Appendix C: Sample Marking Criteria for Unit G324: Advanced Portfolio in Media 69Vertical black lines indicate a significant change to the previous printed version. Changescan be found on pages 13, 29, 66, 70 and 71.© OCR 2008 3GCE Media Studies –version 2
  4. 4. 1 About these QualificationsThis booklet contains OCR’s Advanced Subsidiary GCE and Advanced GCE specifications inMedia Studies for teaching from September 2008.This four- unit specification in Media Studies integrates theoretical and practical approaches byrequiring candidates to write about their coursework experiences in the synoptic examinations. Italso insists upon the importance of a full understanding of the new media which dominate thecontemporary landscape by ensuring that candidates use such media in their coursework and writeabout them in their examinations.There is a great deal of flexibility for centres to choose particular topics and content, but aninsistence upon coverage of a broad range of media. The specification also ensures the placing ofcontemporary media in an historical context and an understanding of the key media concepts oflanguage, representation, audiences and institutions.Through the coursework, candidates will have plenty of opportunities to show what they can doand to be creative. There is also a need for centres to ensure APPROPRIATE MEDIA FACILITIESAND TECHNOLOGIES and for candidates to be taught how to use them before embarking uponassessed work.Detailed support in the form of course guidance material will be available to be read in conjunctionwith this specification.1.1 The Two-Unit ASThe Advanced Subsidiary GCE is both a ‘stand-alone’ qualification and also the first half of thecorresponding Advanced GCE. The AS GCE is assessed at a standard appropriate for candidateswho have completed the first year of study (both in terms of teaching time and content) of thecorresponding two-year Advanced GCE course, ie between GCSE and Advanced GCE.The AS GCE (from September 2008) is made up of two units that form 50% of the correspondingfour-unit Advanced GCE. Candidates complete unit G321 and either G322 or G323.G321: Foundation Portfolio in MediaThis is a coursework unit where candidates produce two paired media artefacts from a series ofbriefs. This process involves progression from a pre-production, preliminary exercise to a morefully realised piece. The briefs offered are: print, video, audio and website. This unit is internallyassessed and externally moderated.G322: Key Media Concepts (TV Drama)This paper covers the two areas of Textual Analysis and Representation alongside Institutions andAudiences. In Section A, candidates answer questions on an unseen moving image extract that isthen linked to some aspect of the representation within the sequence. In Section B, candidates4 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  5. 5. study a specific media industry from a choice of: film, music, newspapers, radio, magazines orvideo games. This unit is externally examined.G323: Key Media Concepts (Radio Drama)This paper covers the two areas of Textual Analysis and Representation alongside Institutions andAudiences. In Section A, candidates answer questions on an unheard audio extract that is linked tosome aspect of representation within the sequence. In Section B, candidates study a specificmedia industry from a choice of: film, music, newspapers, radio, magazines, or video games. Thisunit is externally examined.1.2 The Four-Unit Advanced GCEThe Advanced GCE (from September 2008) is made up of two mandatory units at AS and twofurther units at A2.G324: Advanced Portfolio in MediaThis is a coursework unit where candidates engage with contemporary media technologies toproduce a media portfolio through a combination of two or more media and then present theirresearch, planning and evaluation in two or more forms. This is a development of the skills fromUnit One and is also internally assessed and externally moderated.G325: Critical Perspectives in MediaThis paper covers the two areas of Theoretical Evaluation of Production alongside a study ofContemporary Media Issues. In Section A, candidates describe and evaluate their skillsdevelopment in their production work and then select one production to evaluate in relation to amedia concept. In Section B, candidates choose one topic and then demonstrate theirunderstanding of a contemporary issue through a range of texts, institutions, audiences anddebates. This unit is externally examined.1.3 Qualification Titles and LevelsThese qualifications are shown on a certificate as:• OCR Advanced Subsidiary GCE in Media Studies.• OCR Advanced GCE in Media Studies.Both qualifications are Level 3 in the National Qualifications Framework (NQF).© OCR 2008 5GCE Media Studies –version 2
  6. 6. 1.4 AimsThe aims of these specifications are to:• enhance candidates enjoyment and appreciation of the media and its role in their daily lives;• develop critical understanding of the media through engagement with media products and concepts and through the creative application of practical skills;• explore production processes, technologies and contexts;• become independent in research skills and their application.1.5 Prior Learning/AttainmentNo prior knowledge of the subject is required. The specifications build on, but do not depend on,the knowledge, understanding and skills specified for GCSE Media Studies. It is recommendedthat candidates have attained communication and literacy skills at a level equivalent to GCSEGrade C in English.6 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  7. 7. 2 Summary of Content2.1 AS UnitsG321: Foundation Portfolio in MediaThe following briefs are offered:• Print• Video• Audio• WebsiteG322: Key Media Concepts (TV Drama)Textual Analysis and Representation:• Camera shots, Angle, Movement and Composition• Editing• Sound• Mise-en-SceneInstitutions and Audiences - one of the following media industries is chosen:• Film• Music• Newspapers• Radio• Magazines• Video Games© OCR 2008 7GCE Media Studies –version 2
  8. 8. G323: Key Media Concepts (Radio Drama)Textual Analysis and Representation:• Speech• Music• Sound effects• EditingInstitutions and Audiences – one of the following media industries is chosen:• Film• Music• Newspapers• Radio• Magazines• Video Games8 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  9. 9. 2.2 A2 UnitsG324: Advanced Portfolio in MediaThe following briefs are offered and in this portfolio a combination of two or more media is required:• Video• Print• Web: based• Audio• Games SoftwareG325: Critical Perspectives in Media• Theoretical Evaluation of Production• Contemporary Media Issues- candidates choose one topic from: o Contemporary Media Regulation o Global Media o Media and Collective Identity o Media in the Online Age o Post-modern Media o ’We Media‘ and Democracy© OCR 2008 9GCE Media Studies –version 2
  10. 10. 3 Unit Content3.1 AS G321: Foundation Portfolio in MediaThe purpose of this unit is firstly to assess candidates’ ability to plan and construct media productsusing appropriate technical and creative skills (AO3); secondly to assess candidates’ application ofknowledge and understanding in evaluating their own work, showing how meanings and responsesare created (AO2); and finally to assess candidates’ ability to undertake, apply and presentappropriate research (AO4). The unit requires candidates to engage with contemporary mediatechnologies, giving them the opportunity for development of skills in these technologies.This is a coursework unit, internally assessed and externally moderated. Candidates produce twopaired media artefacts in response to briefs set by OCR plus some appropriate evidence ofresearch and planning. Set briefs are paired in order to provide progression from a pre-production,preliminary exercise to a more fully realised piece and will be in the same medium. This offers theopportunity for skills development to be assessed, as well as a final finished piece.Suggested resourcesCentres should be wary of embarking upon offering this specification without adequate equipment,software and staff training. Candidates entering production coursework for this specification will beat a serious disadvantage if teachers are unable to provide training for them in the use of theparticular software and technology. They will be at a further disadvantage if there is insufficienttechnology for them to use. The minimum resourcing requirements for the delivery of the AS mediaportfolio unit are suggested as being:Digital technology suitable for the construction of media texts within the briefs set.Suitable Internet access for research and where necessary presentation of student work.10 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  11. 11. BriefsWhen centres choose briefs to offer to candidates, they should be guided by their strengths interms of resources and expertise. Centres should also bear in mind the key areas: forms andconventions, production contexts, the role of technologies, audiences/users and representations.The set briefs are as follows:PrintPreliminary exercise: using DTP and an image manipulation program, produce the front page of anew school/college magazine, featuring a photograph of a student in medium close-up plus someappropriately laid-out text and a masthead. Additionally candidates must produce a mock-up of thelayout of the contents page to demonstrate their grasp of DTP.Main task: the front page, contents and double page spread of a new music magazine (if done as agroup task, each member of the group to produce an individual edition of the magazine, followingthe same house style).All images and text used must be original, produced by the candidate(s), minimum of four imagesper candidate.VideoPreliminary exercise: Continuity task involving filming and editing a character opening a door,crossing a room and sitting down in a chair opposite another character, with whom she/he thenexchanges a couple of lines of dialogue. This task should demonstrate match on action,shot/reverse shot and the 180-degree rule.Main task: the titles and opening of a new fiction film, to last a maximum of two minutes.All video and audio material must be original, produced by the candidate(s), with the exception ofmusic or audio effects from a copyright-free source.AudioPreliminary exercise: the introductory music/jingle for a show on the radio with a presenterintroducing and greeting their guest (who must respond) and playing an archive sound clip relatingto the guest (approximately 30-40 seconds duration in total). This exercise is to demonstrateunderstanding of sound editing and mixing and conventions of radio.Main task: A five minute news bulletin (local radio) to include title music, presenter, specialistreporters, OBs, recorded interview, a vox pop and appropriate sound fx and structure.All audio material must be original, produced by the candidate(s), with the exception of music oraudio effects from a copyright-free source.© OCR 2008 11GCE Media Studies –version 2
  12. 12. WebsitePreliminary exercise: a new homepage for a school/college. This should include a photo of theinstitution, buttons to provide easy navigation to other areas of the site and appropriate welcomingtext. There should also be a working hyperlink to a media department page, also with a photo. Thetask aims to demonstrate understanding of the software and of webpage conventions.Main task: produce a campaign website including sound and video for a campaign (eg political,health, charity, environmental). The site should include a logo, original photographs, (minimum fourper candidate), written text, audio, video and easy navigation. If done as a group task, eachmember of the group to produce at least four pages for the site, following the same house style.All material for both tasks to be produced by the candidate(s), with the exception of musical audioeffects from a copyright-free source.Each candidate will evaluate and reflect upon the creative process and their experience of it.Candidates will evaluate their work electronically, this evaluation being guided by a set of keyquestions on a proforma to be completed by the teacher. The format of the discussion has someflexibility and its form can be negotiated between teacher and student: it may take place withindividual candidates or with the production group as a whole, or each individual candidate orproduction group may make a formal or informal presentation to the whole class.12 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  13. 13. The presentation of the research, planning and evaluation may take the form of any one, orcombination of two or more, of the following:• a presentation using slideshow software such as Powerpoint;• a blog or website;• a podcast;• a DVD with ‘extras’.In the evaluation the following questions must be answered:• In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?• How does your media product represent particular social groups?• What kind of media institution might distribute your media product and why?• Who would be the audience for your media product?• How did you attract/address your audience?• What have you learnt about technologies from the process of constructing this product?• Looking back at your preliminary task, what do you feel you have learnt in the progression from it to the full product?Ideas for the format for the presentation of the evaluation can be found in the Guidance Notes.The production element and presentation of research and planning may be individual or groupwork (maximum group size is four candidates). Where candidates have worked in a group, theevidence for assessment may be presented collectively but centres will still assess candidates onan individual basis for their contribution to aspects of the work, from planning, research andproduction to evaluation.G321 is marked and internally standardised by the centre and marks are submitted to OCR by aspecified date, a sample is then selected for external moderation. The unit is marked out of a totalof 100 marks: 20 marks for the presentation of the planning and research; 60 marks for theconstruction; 20 marks for the evaluation.© OCR 2008 13GCE Media Studies –version 2
  14. 14. Acceptable formats for production texts and research presentationsVideo work must be in DVD format but must be playable on standard domestic DVD players formoderation purposes. Audio work must be in CD format. No print item should be larger than A3size.Web pages must be accessible on line to the moderator for the duration of the moderation period.The moderator must receive notification of the URL when the work is sent. The relevant site pagesshould also be copied as files using the save page function on a web browser and burnt to CD forthe moderator. All CDs and DVDs must be checked before despatch to ensure that the files areaccessible. No hard copy printouts of online materials will be accepted. Research and Planningmay be presented in electronic format, but can take the form of a folder or scrapbook at AS Levelonly.Presentation of work for moderationWhere candidates produce disc-based artefacts as part of a group activity, it must be clearlyindicated – both on the cover and on a menu within the disc itself – which candidates havecontributed to the exercise.Each item in each candidate’s submission must be clearly labelled with the details of thecandidate’s name and number and those of the centre.Candidates should make their own copies of products, especially if they are required by thecandidate for portfolios for further/higher education entry, as some materials may be retained byOCR for INSET and archive purposes.All coursework must be carefully packaged to withstand carriage from the centre to the moderatorand back.Samples of complete production portfolios and planning materials will be requested by moderators,so it is important that this evidence is available for all candidates.Marking of workThe centre will be expected to allocate marks according to four levels for each of three categories:Research and PlanningConstructionEvaluationIn arriving at a level for each category, teachers are advised to look for evidence of ‘best fit’. It ispossible both for a candidate to be placed in different levels for each of the three categories and toreceive quite different marks from other members of the same group responsible for producing an14 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  15. 15. artefact, according to his/her contribution. Teachers are asked to support marks with writtencomments under the three categories on the assessment sheet.In centres where there is more than one teacher involved in the marking, there MUST be evidencethat internal standardisation has taken place to ensure a consistent rank order.Assistance with projectsIt is expected that teachers will train students in the use of technology for their coursework and thatschools and colleges will provide the necessary equipment for students to produce their mediatexts.As acting is not a skill that is assessed in Media Studies, but the quality of finished work is quiteclearly affected by the quality of acting, groups may use personnel external to the group to appearin their productions in photos, video or audio.Marking criteria for their briefs can be found in the appendix.© OCR 2008 15GCE Media Studies –version 2
  16. 16. 3.2 AS G322: Key Media Concepts (TV Drama)The purpose of these units is first to assess candidates’ media textual analysis skills and theirunderstanding of the concept of representation using a short unseen moving image extract (AO1,AO2); second to assess candidates’ knowledge and understanding of media institutions and theirproduction processes, distribution strategies, use of technologies and related issues concerningaudience reception and consumption of media texts (AO1, AO2):The examination is two hours (including 30 minutes for viewing and making notes on the movingimage extract) and candidates are required to answer two compulsory questions. The unit ismarked out of a total of 100, with each question marked out of 50.There are two sections to this paper:Section A: Textual Analysis and Representation (50 marks)Section B: Institutions and Audiences (50 marks)Section A: Textual Analysis and RepresentationAn ‘unseen’ moving image extract with one compulsory question dealing with textual analysis ofvarious technical aspects of the languages and conventions of moving image media. Candidateswill be asked to link this analysis with a discussion of some aspect of representation within thesequence.The moving image extract will be provided by OCR in DVD format, with full instructions for theadministration of the examination, viewing conditions and note-making time. Centres must preparecandidates in advance of the examination, using a range of examples from texts from the genrestated below, to demonstrate textual analysis of all of the following technical areas of movingimage language and conventions in relation to the unseen extract:• Camera Angle, Shot, Movement and Composition• Mise-en-Scène• Editing• SoundThe focus of study for Section A is the use of technical aspects of the moving image medium tocreate meaning for an audience, focussing on the creation of representations of specific socialtypes, groups, events or places within the extract. It is not necessary to study the history of thegenre specified. Centres should use examples of the genre specified with their candidates toprepare them for undertaking unseen textual analysis.16 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  17. 17. For examination in 2009, 2010 and 2011:The unseen moving image extract will be four to five minutes long and will be from the followinggenre:TV DramaThe sequence will be taken from a contemporary British one-off or series or serial dramaprogramme.Guidance is given below regarding the administration of the examination. There will be viewing andnote-making time for Section A. The timings and rules for viewing of extract and note-making willbe explained.Section B: Institutions and AudiencesOne compulsory question to be answered by candidates based upon a case study of a specificmedia industry, from a choice of six topic areas offered by OCR.Centres should choose one of the following topic areas, in advance of the examination. Throughspecific case studies of the centre’s choice, candidates should be prepared to demonstrateunderstanding of contemporary institutional processes of production, distribution, marketing andexchange/exhibition at a local, national or international level as well as British audiences’ receptionand consumption. There should also be some emphasis on the students’ own experiences of beingaudiences of a particular medium. Centres may choose to focus on one of the following mediaindustries:• Film• Music• Newspapers• Radio• Magazines• Video games© OCR 2008 17GCE Media Studies –version 2
  18. 18. Set Topic ContentThe content below represents what candidates should learn and is also provided as the source ofthe questions in the examination papers.Section A: Textual Analysis and RepresentationCandidates should be prepared to analyse and discuss the following: technical aspects of thelanguage and conventions of the moving image medium, in relation to the unseen moving imageextract, as appropriate to the genre and extract specified, in order to discuss the sequence’srepresentation of individuals, groups, events or places:Camera Shots, Angle, Movement and Composition• Shots: establishing shot, master shot, close-up, mid-shot, long shot, wide shot, two-shot, aerial shot, point of view shot, over the shoulder shot, and variations of these.• Angle: high angle, low angle, canted angle.• Movement: pan, tilt, track, dolly, crane, steadicam, hand-held, zoom, reverse zoom.• Composition: framing, rule of thirds, depth of field – deep and shallow focus, focus pulls.EditingIncludes transition of image and sound – continuity and non-continuity systems.• Cutting: shot/reverse shot, eyeline match, graphic match, action match, jump cut, crosscutting, parallel editing, cutaway; insert.• Other transitions, dissolve, fade-in, fade-out, wipe, superimposition, long take, short take, slow motion, ellipsis and expansion of time, post-production, visual effects.Sound• Diegetic and non-diegetic sound; synchronous/asynchronous sound; sound effects; sound motif, sound bridge, dialogue, voiceover, mode of address/direct address, sound mixing, sound perspective.• Soundtrack: score, incidental music, themes and stings, ambient sound.Mise-en-Scène• Production design: location, studio, set design, costume and make-up, properties.• Lighting; colour design.18 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  19. 19. It is acknowledged that not every one of the above technical areas will feature in equal measure inany given extract. Therefore examiners are instructed to bear this in mind when marking thecandidates’ answers and will not expect each aspect will be covered in the same degree of detail,but as appropriate to the extract provided and to the discussion of representation.Candidates should be prepared to discuss, in response to the question, how these technicalelements create specific representations of individuals, groups, events or places and help toarticulate specific messages and values that have social significance. Particular areas ofrepresentation that may be chosen are:• Gender• Age• Ethnicity• Sexuality• Class and status• Physical ability/disability• Regional identitySection B: Institutions and AudiencesCandidates should be prepared to understand and discuss the processes of production,distribution, marketing and exchange as they relate to contemporary media institutions, as well asthe nature of audience consumption and the relationships between audiences and institutions. Inaddition, candidates should be familiar with:• the issues raised by media ownership in contemporary media practice;• the importance of cross media convergence and synergy in production, distribution and marketing;• the technologies that have been introduced in recent years at the levels of production, distribution, marketing and exchange;• the significance of proliferation in hardware and content for institutions and audiences;• the importance of technological convergence for institutions and audiences;• the issues raised in the targeting of national and local audiences (specifically, British) by international or global institutions;• the ways in which the candidates’ own experiences of media consumption illustrate wider patterns and trends of audience behaviour.© OCR 2008 19GCE Media Studies –version 2
  20. 20. This unit should be approached through contemporary examples in the form of case studies basedupon one of the specified media areas. Examples may include the following:FilmA study of a specific studio or production company within a contemporary film industry that targetsa British audience (eg Hollywood, Bollywood, UK film), including its patterns of production,distribution, exhibition and consumption by audiences. This should be accompanied by study ofcontemporary film distribution practices (digital cinemas, DVD, HD-DVD, downloads, etc) and theirimpact upon production, marketing and consumption.MusicA study of a particular record label within the contemporary music industry that targets a Britishaudience, including its patterns of production, distribution, marketing and consumption byaudiences. This should be accompanied by study of the strategies used by record labels to counterthe practice of file sharing and their impact on music production, marketing and consumption.NewspapersA study of the contemporary newspaper market in the UK and the ways in which technology ishelping to make newspapers more efficient and competitive despite dwindling audiences. Thisshould be accompanied by study of a specific online version of a national/local newspaper and theissues that are raised for the production, distribution and consumption of news.RadioA study of a particular station or media group within the contemporary radio industry that targets aBritish audience, examining its various production, distribution and exhibition practices, as well asaudience consumption. This should be accompanied by study of the impact of DAB and internetbroadcasting on radio production practices, marketing and (British) audience consumption.MagazinesA study of a successful magazine within the contemporary British magazine market, including itspatterns of production, distribution, marketing and consumption by audiences. This should beaccompanied by study of the use of online magazine editions and the issues that they raise for theproduction, marketing and consumption of a magazine brand.Video gamesA study of the production, distribution and marketing of a specific game within one or acrossvarious gaming platforms, along with its reception by a variety of (British) audiences. This shouldbe accompanied by study of the impact of next generation capabilities (HD, Blu-Ray, onlineservices etc) on the production, distribution, marketing and consumption of games.The above list is not intended to be exhaustive. It is acknowledged that most media industries arecharacterised by cross-media strategies, production and promotion; candidates will be expected tofocus on a particular medium but should make reference to related media where relevant.20 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  21. 21. Additional guidance about the suitability of proposed case studies for Section B guidance will beprovided in the Teachers’ Guide.Additional InformationDetailed instructions for checking and viewing the moving image extract will be sent to centres withthe DVD.TimingThe total time of the examination is two hours, including 30 minutes’ viewing time.The 30 minutes at the beginning will be for reading the questions, viewing and making notes on theextract, before the start of the examination.Each section of the examination paper is weighted equally and marked out of 50. It isrecommended that candidates divide the time between Section A and B equally, with 45 minutesfor each, although the unit will be administered as a continuous examination of two hours.Screening the ExtractCentres need to consider the optimum conditions for screening the extract, so that no candidatesare disadvantaged. The extract should be seen four times in order to allow candidates to makenotes for their answers.Note-makingNotes on the moving image extract are made on the answer booklet provided. Candidates areallowed to read the question before the extract is screened. They should then watch the movingimage extract, without making notes, for the first screening. They should then make notes for thethree subsequent screenings.© OCR 2008 21GCE Media Studies –version 2
  22. 22. 3.3 AS G323: Key Media Concepts (Radio Drama)The purpose of this unit is first to assess candidates media textual analysis skills and theirunderstanding of the concept of representation using a short unheard audio extract (AO1, AO2),second to assess candidates’ knowledge and understanding of media institutions and theirproduction processes, distribution strategies, use of technologies and related issues concerningaudience reception and consumption of media texts (AO1, AO2).The examination is two hours (including 30 minutes for listening and making notes on the audioextract) and candidates are required to answer two compulsory questions. The unit is marked outof a total of 100, with each question marked out of 50.There are two sections to this paper:Section A: Textual Analysis and Representation (50 marks)Section B: Institutions and Audiences (50 marks)Section A Textual Analysis and RepresentationAn ‘unheard’ audio extract, with one compulsory question dealing with textual analysis of varioustechnical aspects of the language and conventions of an unheard audio extract is examined.Candidates will be asked to link this analysis with a discussion of some aspect of representationwithin the sequence.The audio extract will be provided on audio format by OCR, with the full instructions for theadministration of the examination, listening conditions and note making time. Centres must preparecandidates in advance of the examination using a range of examples from texts from the genrestated below, to demonstrate textual analysis of all the of the following areas of audio languageand conventions in relation to the unheard extract:• Speech• Music• Sound effects• EditingThe focus of study for Section A is the use of technical aspects of the audio-radio medium tocreate meaning for an audience, focussing on the creation of representations of specific socialtypes, groups, events or places within the extract. It is not necessary to study the history of thegenre specified. Centres should use examples of the genre specified with their candidates toprepare them for undertaking unheard audio analysis.22 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  23. 23. For the examination in 2009, 2010, 2011:The unheard audio extract will be four to five minutes in length and will be from the following genre:Radio DramaThe sequence will be taken from a contemporary British one-off play or series or serial programme.Guidance is given below regarding the administration of the examination. There will be listeningand note-making time for Section A. The timings and rules for the viewing of extract and notemaking will be explained.Section B: Institutions and AudiencesOne compulsory question will be answered by candidates based upon a case study of a specificmedia industry, from a choice of six topic areas offered by OCR.Centres should choose one of the following topic areas, in advance of the examination. Throughspecific case studies of the centre’s choice, candidates should be prepared to demonstrateunderstanding of contemporary institutional processes of production, distribution, marketing andexchange/exhibition at a local, national or international level as well as British audiences’ receptionand consumption. There should also be some emphasis on the students’ own experiences of beingaudiences of a particular medium.Centres may choose to focus on one of the following media industries:• Film• Music• Newspapers• Radio• Magazines• Video Games© OCR 2008 23GCE Media Studies –version 2
  24. 24. Set Topic ContentThe content below represents what candidates should learn and is also provided as the source ofthe questions in the examination papers.Section A: Textual Analysis and RepresentationCandidates should be prepared to analyse and discuss the following: technical aspects of thelanguage and conventions of the audio-radio medium, in relation to the unheard audio extract, asappropriate to the genre and the extract specified, in order to discuss the sequence’srepresentation of individuals, groups, events or places:Speech:• Accent, tone of the voice, expression of personality, mode of address/ direct address, voiceover, contribution to dialogue, use of dialogue, rhythm and cadence in speech/ speed of the speech and use of silence.Music:• Use of soundtrack, incidental music, theme tune, stings and jingles, ambient sound, contrapuntual sound, mood/ stylisation.Sound effects:• Diegetic and non-diegetic sound, sound mixing, sound motif, radio ident, use of sound effects as indexical signifiers.Editing:• Pacing of show, sound levels, use of silence, continuity, post-production effects, transitions.It is acknowledged that not every one of the above technical areas will feature in equal measure inany given extract. Therefore examiners are instructed to bear this in mind when marking thecandidates’ answers and will not expect each aspect to be covered in the same degree of detail,but as appropriate to the extract provided and to the discussion of representation.Candidates should be prepared to discuss in response to the question, how these technicalelements create specific representations of individuals, groups, events or places and help toarticulate specific messages and values which have social significance. Particular areas ofrepresentation that may be chosen are:• gender;• age;• ethnicity;• sexuality;• class and status;• physical ability/ disability;• regional identity.24 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  25. 25. Section B: Institutions and AudiencesCandidates should be prepared to understand and discuss the processes of production,distribution, marketing and exchange as they relate to contemporary media institutions, as well as,the nature of audience consumption and the relationship between audiences and institutions. Inaddition candidates should be familiar with:• the issues raised by media ownership in contemporary media practice;• the importance of cross media convergence and synergy, in production, distribution and marketing;• the technologies that have been introduced in recent years at the levels of production, marketing and exchange;• the significance of proliferation in hardware and content for institutions and audiences;• the issues raised in the targeting of national and local audiences (specifically, British) by international and global institutions;• the ways in which the candidates’ own experiences of media consumption illustrate wider patterns and trends of audience behaviour.This unit should be approached through contemporary examples in the form of case studies basedupon one of the specified media areas. Examples may include the following:FilmA study of a specific studio or production company within a contemporary film industry that targetsa British audience (eg Hollywood, Bollywood, UK film) including its patterns of production,distribution, exhibition and consumption by audiences. This should be accompanied by study ofcontemporary film distribution practices (digital cinemas, DVD, HD-DVD, downloads, etc) and theirimpact on production, marketing and consumption.MusicA study of a particular record label within the contemporary music industry that targets a Britishaudience, including its patterns of production, distribution marketing and consumption byaudiences. This should be accompanied by the study of strategies used by the record labels tocounter the practice of file sharing and their impact on music production, marketing andconsumption.NewspapersA study of the contemporary newspaper market in the UK and the ways in which technology ishelping to make newspapers more efficient and competitive despite dwindling audiences. Thisshould be accompanied by a study of a specific online version of a national/ local newspaper andthe issues that are raised for the production, distribution and consumption of the news.© OCR 2008 25GCE Media Studies –version 2
  26. 26. RadioA study if the particular station or media group within the contemporary radio industry that targets aBritish audience, examining its various production, distribution and exhibition practices, as well asaudience consumption. This should be accompanied by the study of the impact of DAB andinternet broadcasting on radio production practices, marketing and (British) audience consumption.MagazinesA study of a successful magazine within the contemporary British magazine market, including itspatterns of production, distribution and consumption by audiences. This should be accompanied bythe study of the use of online magazine editions and the issues that they raise for the production,marketing and consumption of a magazine brand.Video GamesA study of the production, distribution and marketing of a specific game within one or acrossvarious gaming platforms, along with its reception by a variety of (British) audiences. This shouldbe accompanied by study of the impact of next generation capabilities (HD, Blu-Ray, onlineservices, etc) on the production, distribution, marketing and consumption of games.The above list is not intended to be exhaustive. It is acknowledged that most media industries arecharacterised by cross-media strategies, production and promotion; candidates will be expected tofocus on a particular medium but should make reference to related media where relevant.Additional guidance about the suitability of proposed case studies for Section B guidance will beprovided in the Teacher’s Guide.26 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  27. 27. Additional informationDetailed instructions for checking and listening to the audio extract will be sent to centres with thedigital sound recording.TimingThe total time of the examination is two hours, including 30 minutes’ listening time.The 30 minutes at the beginning will be for listening to the questions, listening to and making noteson the extract, before the start of the examination.Each section of the examination is weighted equally and marked out of 50. It is recommended thatcandidates divide the time between Section A and section B equally, with 45 minutes for each,although the unit will be administered as a continuous examination of two hours.Broadcasting the ExtractCentres need to consider the optimum conditions for listening to the extract, so that no candidatesare disadvantaged. The audio extract should be heard four times in order to allow candidates tomake notes for their answers.Note-makingNotes on the audio extract are made in the answer booklet provided. Candidates are allowed tohear the question before the extract is played. They should then listen to the audio extract, withoutmaking notes, for the first broadcast. They should then make notes for the three subsequentbroadcasts.© OCR 2008 27GCE Media Studies –version 2
  28. 28. 3.4 A2 G324: Advanced Portfolio in MediaThe purpose of this unit is firstly to assess candidates’ ability to plan and construct media productsusing appropriate technical and creative skills (AO3); secondly to assess candidates’ application ofknowledge and understanding in evaluating their own work, showing how meanings and responsesare created (AO2); and finally to assess candidates’ ability to undertake, apply and presentappropriate research (AO4). The unit requires candidates to engage with contemporary mediatechnologies, giving them the opportunity to develop their own skills in these technologies. It alsoenables them to develop the skills of presentation that are required for further study at higher levelsand in the workplace.This is a coursework unit. Centres must set the brief from the menu below, though they may definemore precise details in negotiation with candidates. From this brief, candidates will produce:• a media portfolio, comprising a main and ancillary texts;• a presentation of their research, planning and evaluation in electronic format.The media portfolio will be produced through a combination of two or more of the following media:• Video• Print• Web-based• Audio• Games softwareThe presentation of the research, planning and evaluation may take the form of any one, orcombination of two or more, of the following:• a presentation using slideshow software such as Powerpoint;• a blog or website;• a podcast;• a DVD with ‘extras’.Production work for the main text in the Advanced Portfolio may be in the same medium as ASwork (in order to allow for the development of skills within a particular medium) or a differentmedium (in order to allow for breadth of experience of different media forms). The ancillary taskswill ensure that all candidates have the opportunity to explore a different medium at some point intheir production work.28 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  29. 29. The production element and presentation of research, planning and evaluation may be individual orgroup work (maximum group size is four candidates). Where candidates have worked in a group,the evidence for assessment may be presented collectively but centres will still assess candidateson an individual basis for their contribution to aspects of the work, from planning, research andproduction to evaluation.Though there is no formal individual essay component for this unit, in the G324 examination,candidates will be asked to write about the work undertaken from this unit and from the AScoursework unit. It is therefore recommended that candidates undertake some form of writtenreflection as practice for the exam.G324 is marked and internally standardised by the centre and marks are submitted to OCR by aspecified date, a sample is then selected for external moderation. The unit is marked out of a totalof 100 marks: 20 marks for the planning and research and its presentation; 60 marks for theconstruction; 20 marks for the evaluation.In the evaluation the following questions must be answered:• In what ways does your media product use, develop or challenge forms and conventions of real media products?• How effective is the combination of your main product and ancillary texts?• What have you learned from your audience feedback?• How did you use new media technologies in the construction and research, planning and evaluation stages?Ideas for the format for the presentation of the evaluation can be found in the Guidance Notes.Suggested resourcesAs noted above, centres should be wary of embarking on offering this specification withoutadequate equipment, software and staff training. Candidates entering production coursework forthis specification will be at a serious disadvantage if teachers are unable to provide training forthem in the use of the particular software and technology. They will be at a further disadvantage ifthere is insufficient technology for them to use. The minimum resourcing requirements for thedelivery of the media portfolio units are suggested as being:• Digital technology suitable for the construction of media texts within the briefs set.• Digital technology suitable for the presentation of research, planning and evaluation of the text produced.• Suitable Internet access for research and where necessary presentation of student work.© OCR 2008 29GCE Media Studies –version 2
  30. 30. Menu of set briefsWhen centres choose from these set briefs for candidates, they should be guided by theirstrengths in terms of resources and expertise. Centres should also bear in mind the key areas:forms and conventions, production contexts, the role of technologies, audiences/users andrepresentations. Further details on the briefs for this unit will be available in Guidance Notes.To avoid excessive overlap with AS briefs and to ensure an appropriate level of demand as a stepup from AS, the following form the menu of set tasks at A2. All briefs require the production ofthree media products, one major piece and two ancillary products. The menu allows candidates towork in just two media, or to explore three different media.30 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  31. 31. Briefs1. A promotion package for the release of an album, to include a music promo video, together with two of the following three options:• a website homepage for the band;• a cover for its release on DVD;• a magazine advertisement for the DVD.2. A promotion package for a new film, to include a teaser trailer, together with two of the following three options:• a website homepage for the film;• a film magazine front cover, featuring the film;• a poster for the film.3. An advertising package for a new product or service, to include two TV advertisements, together with two of the following three options:• a radio advertisement;• a TV programme sponsorship sequence;• a web pop-up.4. A promotion package for a new computer/video game, to include two TV advertisements, together with two of the following three options:• the cover of the game’s package;• two hyperlinked pages from the game’s website;• a magazine advertisement for the game.5. A promotion package for a new soap opera, to include a TV trailer, together with two of the following three options:• a listings magazine front cover featuring the new soap;• two hyperlinked webpages (with video extract) for the soap’s website;• a poster for the soap.© OCR 2008 31GCE Media Studies –version 2
  32. 32. 6. A selection of materials related to an original children’s TV drama, to include the title sequence to the TV programme, together with two of the following three options:• the front cover to a magazine for the series;• a DVD cover for the series;• a radio advertisement for the magazine.7. An extract from a new documentary TV programme, lasting approximately five minutes, together with two of the following three options:• a radio trailer for the documentary;• a double-page spread from a listings magazine focused on the documentary;• a newspaper advertisement for the documentary.8. The first two pages of a new local newspaper, together with two of the following three options:• a poster for the newspaper;• a radio advertisement for the newspaper;• two hyperlinked pages from the paper’s website.9. A website for a new TV channel (to include a minimum of three hyperlinked pages with original images, audio and video extract), together with two of the following three options:• a newspaper advertisement for the channel;• a double page spread for a listings magazine, focused on the channel’s launch;• an animated ident sequence for the channel.10. A short film in its entirety, lasting approximately five minutes, which may be live action or animated or a combination of both, together with two of the following three options:• a poster for the film;• a radio trailer for the film;• a film magazine review page featuring the film.32 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  33. 33. 11. The first level of a new computer/video game, together with two of the following three options:• the cover for the game’s package;• a magazine advertisement for the game;• a radio advertisement for the game.12. An extract/package from a local TV news programme, lasting approximately five minutes, together with two of the following three options:• two hyperlinked pages from the programme’s website;• a generic radio trailer for the programme;• a short title sequence for the programme.13. An extract from a radio play, lasting approximately five minutes, together with two of the following three options:• a newspaper advertisement for the play;• a double: page listings magazine feature about the play;• a page from the radio station’s website promoting the play.All material for all tasks to be produced by the candidates with the exception of acknowledged non-original sound or image material used in a limited way in video/radio work. Further guidance will beavailable in the support materials.Acceptable formats for production texts and research presentationsVideo work must be in DVD format and must be playable on standard domestic DVD players formoderation purposes. Audio work must be in CD format. No print item should be larger than A3size. Games should be either in Flash format or playable on an existing console.Web pages and blogs must be accessible on line to the moderator for the duration of themoderation period. The moderator must receive notification of the URL when the work is sent. Therelevant site pages should also be copied as files using the save page function on a web browserand burnt to CD for the moderator. Slideshows and podcasts should likewise be burnt to CD. AllCDs and DVDs must be checked before despatch to ensure that the files are accessible. No hardcopy printouts of online material will be accepted. Research, planning and evaluation MUST bepresented in electronic format.© OCR 2008 33GCE Media Studies –version 2
  34. 34. Presentation of work for moderationWhere candidates produce disc-based artefacts as part of a group activity, it must be clearlyindicated – both on the cover and on the disc/tape itself – which candidates have contributed to theexercise.Each item in each candidate’s submission must be clearly labelled with the details of the candidateand the centre.Candidates should make their own copies of products, especially if they are required by thecandidate for portfolios for further/higher education entry, as some materials may be retained byOCR for INSET and archive purposes.All coursework must be carefully packaged to withstand carriage from the centre to the Moderatorand back.Marking of workThe centre will be expected to allocate marks according to four levels for each of three categories:• Research and Planning• Construction• EvaluationIn arriving at a level for each category, teachers are advised to look for evidence of ‘best fit’. It ispossible both for a candidate to be placed in different levels for each of the three categories and toreceive quite different marks from other members of the same group responsible for producing anartefact, according to his/her contribution. Teachers are asked to support marks with writtencomments under the three categories on the assessment sheet.In centres where there is more than one teacher involved in the marking, there must be evidencethat internal standardisation has taken place to ensure a consistent rank order.Assistance with projectsIt is expected that teachers will train students in the use of technology for their coursework and thatschools and colleges will provide the necessary equipment for students to produce their mediatexts.As acting is not a skill that is assessed in Media Studies, but the quality of finished work is quiteclearly affected by the quality of acting, groups may use personnel external to the group to appearin their productions in photos, video or audio.34 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  35. 35. 3.5 A2 G325: Critical Perspectives in MediaThe purpose of this unit is to assess candidates’ knowledge and understanding of media concepts,contexts and critical debates, through their understanding of one contemporary media issue andtheir ability to evaluate their own practical work in reflective and theoretical ways.The examination is two hours. Candidates are required to answer two compulsory questions, ontheir own production work, and one question from a choice of six topic areas. The unit is markedout of a total of 100, with the two questions on production work marked out of 25 each, and themedia theory question marked out of 50.There are two sections to this paper:Section A: Theoretical Evaluation of Production (50 marks)Section B: Contemporary Media Issues (50 marks)Section A: Theoretical Evaluation of ProductionCandidates answer two compulsory questions. The first requires them to describe and evaluatetheir skills development over the course of their production work, from Foundation Portfolio toAdvanced Portfolio. The second asks them to identify one production and evaluate it in relation toone theoretical concept.Question 1(a) requires candidates to describe and evaluate their skills development over thecourse of their production work, from Foundation Portfolio to Advanced Portfolio. The focus of thisevaluation must be on skills development, and the question will require them to adapt this to one ortwo specific production practices. The list of practices to which questions will relate is as follows:• Digital Technology• Creativity• Research and planning• Post-production• Using conventions from real media textsIn the examination, questions will be posed using one or two of these categories.Where candidates have produced relevant work outside the context of their A Level media course,they are free to additionally refer to this experience.Question 1(b) requires candidates to select one production and evaluate it in relation to a mediaconcept. The list of concepts to which questions will relate is as follows:© OCR 2008 35GCE Media Studies –version 2
  36. 36. • Genre• Narrative• Representation• Audience• Media languageIn the examination, questions will be set using one of these concepts only.In some circumstances, candidates will be expected to select the production that appears to relatemost effectively to the specific concept that arises in the exam question. However, the requirementfor candidates to evaluate one of their productions in relation to a concept does not assume thatthe concept will necessarily always fit easily and in an orthodox way. Thus in some casescandidates will be describing their productions in terms of them not relating straightforwardly to theconcept. For example, a candidate producing three websites over their two portfolios mightdescribe ways in which websites cannot be understood easily through applying conventionalnarrative theory. Whether the candidate applies the concept to the product or uses the productionto challenge the concept, it is essential that candidates are sufficiently knowledgeable about theconcept for either approach. Candidates may choose to write about work undertaken at AS or A2,main task or preliminary/ancillary.Section B: Contemporary Media IssuesOne question to be answered from a choice of six topic areas offered by OCR. There will be twoquestions from each topic area.The topic areas require understanding of contemporary media texts, industries, audiences anddebates.Candidates must choose one of the following topic areas, in advance of the examination and,through specific case studies, texts, debates and research of the candidates’ choice, prepare todemonstrate understanding of the contemporary issue. This understanding must combineknowledge of at least two media and a range of texts, industries, audiences and debates, but theseare to be selected by the centre / candidate. The assessment of the response will be generic,allowing for the broadest possible range of responses within the topic area chosen. Each topic isaccompanied by four prompt questions, and candidates must be prepared to answer an examquestion that relates to one or more of these four prompts. There should be emphasis on thehistorical, the contemporary and the future in relation to the chosen topic, with most attention onthe present. Centres are thus advised to ensure that study materials for this unit are up to date andrelevant. Candidates may choose to focus on one of the following contemporary media issues:• Contemporary Media Regulation• Global Media• Media and Collective Identity• Media in the Online Age36 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  37. 37. • Post-modern Media• ‘We Media’ and DemocracyTopic Content PromptsCandidates are free to study any media texts, theories, case studies, debates and issues,providing they relate to the four prompts for the topic area selected. The exam question will relateto one or more of the prompts.Contemporary Media Regulation• What is the nature of contemporary media regulation compared with previous practices?• What are the arguments for and against specific forms of contemporary media regulation?• How effective are regulatory practices?• What are the wider social issues relating to media regulation?Candidates might explore combinations of:Film censorship, the regulation of advertising, the Press and regulation / control, computer / videogame classification, contemporary broadcasting and political control, the effects debate andalternative theories of audience, children and television, violence and the media or a range of otherstudy contexts relating to the regulation of contemporary media.Global Media• What kinds of media are increasingly global in terms of production and distribution?• How have global media developed, in historical terms, and how inclusive is this trend in reality?• What kinds of audience behaviour and consumption are increasingly global?• What are the arguments for and against global media, in relation to content, access, representation and identity?Candidates might explore combinations of any two media in relation to the above prompts.Examples are film and debates around cultural imperialism, television and national versus importedbroadcasting, national press in relation to global news provision, media marketing aimed at cross-national territories, examples of media that contradict theories of globalisation or a range of otherexamples of global media practices.Media and Collective Identity• How do the contemporary media represent nations, regions and ethnic / social / collective groups of people in different ways?© OCR 2008 37GCE Media Studies –version 2
  38. 38. • How does contemporary representation compare to previous time periods?• What are the social implications of different media representations of groups of people?• To what extent is human identity increasingly ‘mediated’?Candidates might explore combinations of any media representation across two media, or twodifferent representations across two media. Some examples are:National cinema, television representations, magazines and gender, representations of youth andyouth culture, post-9/11 representations of Islam, absence / presence of people with disability intwo media.Media in the Online Age• How have online media developed?• What has been the impact of the internet on media production?• How is consumer behaviour and audience response transformed by online media, in relation to the past?• To what extent has convergence transformed the media?Candidates might explore combinations of any two media, considering how each (or the two inconverged forms) can be analysed from the above prompts. Examples might be musicdownloading and distribution, the film industry and the internet, online television, online gaming,online news provision, various forms of online media production by the public or a range of otheronline media forms.Post-modern Media• What are the different versions of post-modernism (historical period, style, theoretical approach)?• What are the arguments for and against understanding some forms of media as post-modern?• How do post-modern media texts challenge traditional text-reader relations and the concept of representation?• In what ways do media audiences and industries operate differently in a post-modern world?Candidates might explore combinations of:How post-modern media relate to genre and narrative across two media, computer / video gamesand new forms of representation, post-modern cinema, interactive media, reality TV, music video,advertising, post-modern audience theories, aspects of globalisation, parody and pastiche in mediatexts or a range of other applications of post-modern media theory.38 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  39. 39. ‘We Media’ and Democracy• What are ‘We Media’?• Where / how has ‘We Media’ emerged?• In what way are the contemporary media more democratic than before?• In what ways are the contemporary media less democratic than before?Candidates might explore combinations of any two media in relation to the above prompts. Startingfrom Gillmoor’s definition, all media that are ‘homegrown’, local, organic and potentially counter-cultural can be studied for this topic, as long as two media (eg web-logging and digital filmuploading and sharing) are studied.Further GuidanceSection 1In order for candidates to be best prepared for the exam, it is suggested that preparation for G325should take place alongside production work. However, centres are not recommended to designA2 production briefs purely to be ‘suitable‘ for G325. Rather, candidates should be guided inreflective, theoretical evaluation of production as an ongoing way of learning throughout their ASand A2 studies. Question 1(a) directly requests an evaluation of how candidates’ media productionskills have developed progressively from AS to A2, so centres are advised to guide candidatesthrough regular ‘audits’ of skills development. As the question for 1(b) is different in focus for eachassessment session, and draws from a list of possible concepts, candidates should either prepareto answer on more than one of their productions (so they can choose the production in response tothe specific demands of the question) or prepare an evaluation of one production which covers allof the possible concepts.Section 2In order to be fully prepared for the specific requirements of the question, the material studied bycandidates must cover these three elements:• Historical – dependent on the requirements of the topic, candidates must summarise the development of the media forms in question in theoretical contexts.• Contemporary – current issues within the topic area.• Future – candidates must demonstrate personal engagement with debates about the future of the media forms / issues that the topic relates to.In order to preserve the flexibility and freedom for candidates / centres to tailor the topics to theirown preferences / interests, the list of examples offered above should be taken as a starting pointbut certainly not as a prescribed set of content. However, centres should approach a topic with thefollowing general guidance in mind. Credit will be given for work which can be adapted to thespecific requirements of the question.© OCR 2008 39GCE Media Studies –version 2
  40. 40. For example, a candidate studying computer / video games for Post-modern Media will need toconsider the status of games as post-modern in relation to their subversion of traditional text-reader relations, and discuss the avatar (embodiment of the player in character form onscreen) interms of how this might challenge a traditional understanding of media representation. To cover thehistorical, contemporary and future perspectives, they will need to study the history of computergames as a media form, the current industry and contemporary theories / debates, andperspectives on the future of gaming in terms of players, designers and industries.In addition, candidates will need to offer a balance of media theories, knowledge of texts andindustries and personal engagement with issues and debates. For example, a candidate studyingBritish Cinema for ‘The Media and Collective Identity’ should discuss theories of film representationand realism in relation to the history of British cinema, a range of British films from recent years,funding, Government and industry practices, and offer a critically informed point of view on howBritain is represented to itself and to the wider audience at the present time.40 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  41. 41. 4 Schemes of Assessment4.1 AS GCE Scheme of Assessment AS GCE Media Studies (H140)AS G321: Foundation Portfolio in Media50% of the total AS GCE marks This is a coursework unit where candidates produce two pairedCoursework media artefacts from a series of briefs.100 marks Assessment Criteria: Please refer to Appendix B of this specification.Either: AS G322: Key Media Concepts (TV Drama)50% of the total AS GCE marks This question paper has two sections.2 h written paper100 marks Section A: Candidates are required to answer one question based on an unseen moving image extract. Section B: Candidates are required to answer one question from Institutions and Audiences.Or: AS G323: Key Media Concepts (Radio Drama)50% of the total AS GCE marks This question paper has two sections.2 h written paper100 marks Section A: Candidates are required to answer one question based on an unheard radio drama extract. Section B: Candidates are required to answer one question from Institutions and Audiences.4.2 Advanced GCE Scheme of Assessment Advanced GCE Media Studies (H540)A2 G324: Advanced Portfolio in Media25% of the total This is a coursework unit where candidates will produce a media portfolioAdvanced GCE marks and a presentation of their research, planning and evaluation.Coursework Assessment Criteria: Please refer to Appendix B of this specification.100 marks This unit is synoptic.A2 G325: Critical Perspectives in Media25% of the total This question paper has two sections:Advanced GCE marks Section A: Candidates are required to answer one question on2 h written paper Theoretical Evaluation of Production.100 marks Section B: Candidates answer one question from a choice of six from Contemporary Media Issues. This unit is synoptic.© OCR 2008 41GCE Media Studies –version 2
  42. 42. 4.3 Unit OrderThe normal order in which the unit assessments could be taken is AS Units G321 and G322 orG323 in the first year of study, leading to an AS GCE award, then A2 Units G324 and G325leading to the Advanced GCE award. However, the unit assessments may be taken in any order.Alternatively, candidates may take a valid combination of unit assessments at the end of their ASGCE or Advanced GCE course in a ‘linear’ fashion.4.4 Unit Options (at AS/A2)For AS GCE Media Studies candidates must take AS Unit G321 and either G322 or G323.In the Advanced GCE specification; for Advanced GCE Media Studies candidates take AS UnitG321 and either G322 or G323, and A2 Units G324 and G325.4.5 Synoptic Assessment (A Level GCE)Synoptic assessment is included in A2 units G324 and G325.Synoptic assessment in media studies will take account of the requirement that A Levelqualifications should enable candidates to develop a broader and deeper understanding of theconnections between the knowledge and understanding set out in the specification as a whole.Synoptic assessment will involve the explicit synthesis of insights gained from a close and detailedstudy of a range of media texts, institutions and technologies. It will require candidates to showevidence of the ways in which contextual factors and media concepts inform their own readings,and ensure that candidates demonstrate their skills of interpretation and evaluation to givearticulate, well-argued responses.4.6 Assessment AvailabilityThere are two examination series each year, in January and June.In 2009, only AS units will be assessed.From 2010 onwards, both AS units and A2 units will be assessed.42 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  43. 43. 4.7 Assessment ObjectivesCandidates are expected to demonstrate the following in the context of the content described:AO1• Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of media concepts, contexts and critical debates, using terminology appropriately and with accurate and coherent written expression.AO2• Apply knowledge and understanding to show how meanings are created when analysing media products and evaluating their own practical work.AO3• Demonstrate the ability to plan and construct media products using appropriate technical and creative skills.AO4• Demonstrate the ability to undertake and apply appropriate research.AO weightings in AS GCE Unit % of AS GCE Total AO1 AO2 AO3 AO4AS G321: Foundation Portfolio in Media 0 10 30 10 50%AS G322: Key Media Concepts (TV Drama) 30 20 0 0 50%AS G323: Key Media Concepts (Radio Drama) 30 20 0 0 50% 30% 30% 30% 10% 100%© OCR 2008 43GCE Media Studies –version 2
  44. 44. AO weightings in Advanced GCE Unit % of Advanced GCE Total AO1 AO2 AO3 AO4AS G321: Foundation Portfolio in Media 0 5 15 5 25%AS G322: Key Media Concepts (TV Drama) 15 10 0 0 25%AS G323: Key Media Concepts (Radio Drama) 15 10 0 0 25%A2 G324: Advanced Portfolio in Media 0 5 15 5 25%A2 G325: Critical Perspectives in Media 15 10 0 0 25% 30% 30% 30% 10% 100%4.8 Quality of Written CommunicationIn Media Studies, the quality of written communication will be taken into account in assessing yourwork in the two externally assessed units.Candidates will:• ensure that text is legible and that spelling, punctuation and grammar are accurate so that meaning is clear;• select and use a form and style of writing appropriate to purpose and to complex subject matter;• organise information clearly and coherently, using specialist vocabulary when appropriate.44 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  45. 45. 5 Technical Information5.1 Making Unit EntriesPlease note that centres must be registered with OCR in order to make any entries, includingestimated entries. It is recommended that centres apply to OCR to become a registered centre wellin advance of making their first entries. Centres must have made an entry for a unit in order forOCR to supply the appropriate forms or moderator details for coursework.It is essential that unit entry codes are quoted in all correspondence with OCR. See Sections 4.1and 4.2 for these unit entry codes.5.2 Making Qualification EntriesCandidates must enter for qualification certification separately from unit assessment(s). If acertification entry is not made, no overall grade can be awarded.Candidates may enter for:• AS GCE certification (entry code (H140);• Advanced GCE certification (entry code (H540).A candidate who has completed all the units required for the qualification may enter for certificationeither in the same examination series (within a specified period after publication of results) or in alater series.As GCE certification is available from June 2009.Advanced GCE certification is available from June 2010.5.3 GradingAll GCE units are awarded a-e. The Advanced Subsidiary GCE is awarded on the scale A-E. TheAdvanced GCE is awarded on the scale A-E with access to an A*. To be awarded an A*,candidates will need to achieve a grade A on their full A Level qualification and an A* on theaggregate of their A2 units. Grades are reported on certificates. Results for candidates who fail toachieve the minimum grade (E or e) will be recorded as unclassified (U or u) and this is notcertificated.A Uniform Mark Scale (UMS) enables comparison of candidates’ performance across units andacross series and enables candidates’ scores to be put on a common scale for aggregation© OCR 2008 45GCE Media Studies –version 2
  46. 46. purposes. The two-unit AS GCE has a total of 200 uniform marks and the four-unit Advanced GCEhas a total of 400 uniform marks.OCR converts the candidate’s raw mark for each unit to a uniform mark. The maximum uniformmark for any unit depends on that unit’s weighting in the specification. In these Media Studiesspecifications, the four units of the Advanced GCE specification have UMS weightings of 25% (andthe two units of the AS GCE specification have UMS weightings of 50%). The UMS total for eachunit is 100. Each unit’s raw mark grade boundary equates to the uniform mark boundary at thesame grade. Intermediate marks are converted on a pro-rata basis.Uniform marks correspond to unit grades as follows: (Advanced Maximum Unit Unit Grade GCE) Uniform Mark a b c d e Unit Weighting u 25% 100 100–80 79–70 69–60 59–50 49–40 39–0OCR adds together the unit uniform marks and compares these to pre-set boundaries (see thetable below) to arrive at qualification grades. Qualification Grade Qualification A B C D E UAS GCE 200–160 159–140 139–120 119–100 99–80 79–0Advanced GCE 400–320 319–280 279–240 239–200 199–160 159-0Candidates achieving at least 320 UMS marks in their Advanced GCE, ie grade A and who alsogain at least 180 UMS in their two A2 units will receive an A* grade.5.4 Result Enquiries and AppealsUnder certain circumstances, a centre may wish to query the grade available to one or morecandidates or to submit an appeal against an outcome of such an enquiry. Enquiries about unitresults must be made immediately following the series in which the relevant unit was taken.For procedures relating to enquires on results and appeals, centres should consult the OCRAdministration Guide for General Qualifications and the document Enquiries about Results andAppeals – Information and Guidance for Centres produced by the Joint Council. Copies of the mostrecent editions of these papers can be obtained from OCR.5.5 Shelf-life of UnitsIndividual unit results, prior to certification of the qualification, have a shelf-life limited only by thatof the qualification.46 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  47. 47. 5.6 Unit and Qualification Re-sitsThere is no restriction on the number of times a candidate may re-sit each unit before entering forcertification for an AS GCE or Advanced GCE.Candidates may enter for the full qualifications an unlimited number of times.5.7 Guided Learning HoursAS GCE Media Studies requires 180 guided learning hours in total.Advanced GCE Media Studies requires 360 guided learning hours in total.5.8 Code of Practice/Subject Criteria/Common Criteria RequirementsThese specifications comply in all respects with current GCSE, GCE, GNVQ and AEA Code ofPractice as available on the QCA website, the subject criteria for GCE Media Studies and TheStatutory Regulation of External Qualifications 2004.5.9 Arrangements for Candidates with Particular RequirementsFor candidates who are unable to complete the full assessment or whose performance may beadversely affected through no fault of their own, teachers should consult the Access Arrangementsand Special Consideration: Regulations and Guidance Relating to Candidates who are Eligible forAdjustments in Examinations produced by the Joint Council. In such cases advice should besought from OCR as early as possible during the course.5.10 Prohibited Qualifications and Classification CodeCandidates who enter for the OCR GCE specifications may not also enter for any other GCEspecification with the certification title Media Studies in the same examination series.Every specification is assigned to a national classification code indicating the subject area to whichit belongs.© OCR 2008 47GCE Media Studies –version 2
  48. 48. Centres should be aware that candidates who enter for more than one GCE qualification with thesame classification code will have only one grade (the highest) counted for the purpose of theSchool and College Achievement and Attainment Tables.The classification code for these specifications is 5350.5.11 Coursework Administration/RegulationsSupervision and AuthenticationAs with all coursework, teachers must be able to verify that the work submitted for assessment isthe candidate’s own work. Sufficient work must be carried out under direct supervision to allow theteacher to authenticate the coursework marks with confidence.Submitting marks to OCRCentres must have made an entry for a unit in order for OCR to supply the appropriate forms ormoderator details for coursework. Coursework administration documents are sent to centres on thebasis of estimated entries. Marks may be submitted via Interchange to OCR either on thecomputer-printed Coursework Mark Sheets (MS1) provided by OCR (sending the top copy to OCRand the second copy to their allocated moderator) or by EDI (centres using EDI are asked to print acopy of their file and sign it before sending to their allocated moderator).Deadline for the receipt of coursework marks are:10 January for the January series;15 May for the June series.The awarding body must require centres to obtain from each candidate a signed declaration thatauthenticates the coursework they produce as their own. For regulations governing coursework,centres should consult the OCR Administration Guide for General Qualifications. Further copies ofthe coursework administration documents are available on the OCR website (www.ocr.org.uk).Standardisation and ModerationAll internally-assessed coursework is marked by the teacher and internally standardised by thecentre. Marks must be submitted to OCR by the agreed date, after which postal moderation takesplace in accordance with OCR procedures.The purpose of moderation is to ensure that the standard for the award of marks in internally-assessed coursework is the same for each centre, and that each teacher has applied thestandards appropriately across the range of candidates within the centre.The sample of work that is submitted to the moderator for moderation must show how the markshave been awarded in relation to the marking criteria.48 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  49. 49. Minimum Coursework RequiredIf a candidate submits no work for a unit, then the candidate should be indicated as being absentfrom that unit on the coursework mark sheets submitted to OCR. If a candidate completes anywork at all for that unit then the work should be assessed according to the criteria and markinginstructions and the appropriate mark awarded, which may be zero.© OCR 2008 49GCE Media Studies –version 2
  50. 50. 6 Other Specification Issues6.1 Overlap with other QualificationsThere is a small degree of overlap between the content of these specifications and those forAdvanced GCE in Communication Studies, Film Studies, English Literature, English Language,Performance Studies, Sociology, History, Politics, Art and Design, Graphics, Photography andCritical Thinking.6.2 Progression from these QualificationsThe specifications provide a suitable foundation for the study of Media Studies or related coursesin higher education. Equally they are also suitable for candidates intending to pursue businesscareers or further study in business studies, or social sciences, or as part of a course of generaleducation.6.3 Key Skills MappingThese specifications provide opportunities for the development of the Key Skills of Communication,Application of Number, Information Technology, Working with Others, Improving Own Learning andPerformance and Problem Solving at Levels 2 and/or 3. However, the extent to which this evidencefulfils the Key Skills criteria at these levels will be totally dependent on the style of teaching andlearning adopted for each unit.The following table indicates where opportunities may exist for at least some coverage of thevarious Key Skills criteria at Levels 2 and/or 3 for each unit. Unit C AoN IT WwO IOLP PS .1a .1b .2 .3 .1 .2 .3 .1 .2 .3 .1 .2 .3 .1 .2 .3 .1 .2 .3G321G322G323G324G32550 GCE Media Studies – version 2
  51. 51. 6.4 Spiritual, Moral, Ethical, Social, Legislative, Economic and Cultural IssuesThese specifications offer opportunities that can contribute to an understanding of these issues inthe following topics:• Engage in imaginative and creative activity in their own media production coursework and develop an appreciation of the imagination and creativity of others in the creation of media texts.• Recognise and value the world and others in the study of the representation of age, class, gender, sexuality and ethnicity.• Develop knowledge, awareness and reasoning concerning values and attitudes of society in all written and practical work.• Develop an understanding of the role of the mass media in the context of national and European citizenship.However, no spiritual issues are covered in these specifications.6.5 Sustainable Development, Health and Safety Considerations and European DevelopmentsThese specifications support these issues, consistent with current EU agreements, in the followingtopics:• Encourage candidates to look at the media in other European countries.• Study of the regulation and control of the press, broadcasting and film censorship in European countries.• A comparison between government and media in the UK and other European nations.However, there are no sustainable development issues or health and safety considerations inthese specifications.6.6 Avoidance of BiasOCR has taken great care in the preparation of these specifications and assessment materials toavoid bias of any kind.© OCR 2008 51GCE Media Studies –version 2
  52. 52. 6.7 LanguageThese specifications and associated assessment materials are in English only.6.8 Disability Discrimination Act Information Relating to these SpecificationsAS/A Levels often require assessment of a broad range of competences. This is because they aregeneral qualifications and, as such, prepare candidates for a wide range of occupations andhigher-level courses.The revised AS/A Level qualification and subject criteria were reviewed to identify whether any ofthe competences required by the subject presented a potential barrier to any disabled candidates.If this was the case, the situation was reviewed again to ensure that such competences wereincluded only where essential to the subject. The findings of this process were discussed withdisability groups and with disabled people.Reasonable adjustments are made for disabled candidates in order to enable them to access theassessments. For this reason, very few candidates will have a complete barrier to any part of theassessment. Information on reasonable adjustments is found in Access Arrangements and SpecialConsideration: Regulations and Guidance Relating to Candidates who are Eligible for Adjustmentsin Examinations produced by the Joint Council (refer to Section 5.9 of this specification).Candidates who are still unable to access a significant part of the assessment, even after exploringall possibilities through reasonable adjustments, may still be able to receive an award. They wouldbe given a grade on the parts of the assessment they have taken and there would be an indicationon their certificate that not all of the competences have been addressed. This will be kept underreview and may be amended in the future.52 GCE Media Studies – version 2

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